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Tesla Trips

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by Great Dane, Aug 29, 2014.

  1. Great Dane

    Great Dane Member

    Jan 31, 2014
    United States St Pete FL
    The Amazing Tesla Model S

    We took a long drive to Crystal River Florida
    I charged to somewhere between daily, and trip
    247 Miles to be exact
    195 mile roundtrip
    Wh/mile usage 245, mixed driving 35-63 mph
    Ac on, tinted windows up
    Battery Bar on return 75
    247 – 195 =52
    75 – 52 = 23 mile gain in range
    All I can say is wow!
    The Car Continues to amaze
    Tell me about your trips
  2. Chipper

    Chipper Active Member

    Sep 23, 2013
    Chattanooga, TN
    Chattanooga to Norfolk > Norfolk to Monterey, CA > Monterey to Chattanooga

    All on SuperChargers except for the first charge and the last charge.
    9,050 Miles total
    286 Avg Wh/Mi
    47 SuperChargers visited
  3. gavine

    gavine Petrol Head turned EV Enthusiast

    Apr 1, 2014
    Southern New Jersey
    South Jersey to Hershey Park. MS60 - without SuperCharging. 120 miles each way. Needed to add about 40 miles of charge total. Hershey Park has four Chargepoints but concerned they might be unavailable so we stopped at Delaware Welcome Center, which has two 70A J1772's. Stopped there for an hour. Both chargers were available and had a nice breakfast at the food court. Arrived at Hershey to find 3 of the 4 chargers available and not ICE'd. One was taken by a brand new MS60 with the "Zero Emissions" tags on it still. Charged for free while enjoying the park and had 180 miles of charge for the way home. A very pleasant experience and only took a minute it two of planning.

    By the way, I think we take Google Maps for granted in the sense that, without it, life with an EV would be much more difficult. Getting the exact distance from Google Maps is priceless when it comes to trip planning.
  4. purplewalt

    purplewalt Active Member

    Jun 9, 2013
    Dallas, Texas
    I have actually taken two extended trips in my MS, have now been to both the East and West Coasts.

    This past Oct./Nov. I made my FIRST long-distance drive across the Southeast (barely missing Florida).
    I started in Dallas, left work on my way to Shreveport.
    My hotel I had reserved was to have had a 240V outlet for me to charge, and little did I know there a two Hilton Garden Inns in the same vicinity.
    Shreveport only has 110V outdoor outlets, whereas the Bossier City location (a couple miles down the road) HAS the 240 outlet I wanted/needed for charging.
    (Most reservation folks do not have a clue when you are asking about an outlet, so just be patient when requesting that they check ahead of time.)
    But I had made back-up plans, and called and drove on to my first RV park, arrived, lowered the rear seat back and spent the night in my sleeping bag in the back of my MS.
    Second night 495 miles later in Northern Alabama, similar situation: slept in the back of my car in a RV Park.

    Got up, spent most of the day charging (only single chargers) @ Marietta, GA Service Center, where they treated me like family.
    I was able to shave (RV park restrooms were locked, and they did not leave me the code), relax, watch the workings of test drives, sales, service and relive the excitement of some folks who were picking up their new MS. Made my way to South GA, spent the night in a lovely RV Park with its own lake and my own room in a building and a real bed.

    Went over to Savannah, explored and toured, then went to Yemassee RV Park for two nights in my KOA Kabin (my destination was just up the road).
    They had wine tastings, a pool, lots of Northern folks there for the upcoming Winter.

    Headed up to Charleston, spent two nights there with some touring of the Aircraft Carrier, Submarine, Plantation Grounds and its Gardens then on to Charlotte, NC to visit a friend and stay overnight with his family.
    My 240 V extension cord did not have the same configuration as his dryer outlet, but his wife had found a nearby free charging option outside a Whole Foods market, so I still found a way to charge.

    Left Charlotte, went to my first Supercharger (and only) on this trip in Burlington, visited a museum in Durham, then back to the Burlington Supercharger, stopped at a Gallery in Asheville, made my way to KOA Kabin West of Asheville.
    Rest of trip was mostly driving and charging thru Tennessee and Arkansas. I tried a bit of charging at a Blink station outside a restaurant, and it is slower rate than an RV Park.
    Day-charged in Crossville, TN.
    One KOA in Buffalo, TN I spoke with refused charging my car, so I spent the night in a huge two story fully loaded Cabin in Loretta Lynn's RV park.
    Day-charged at a beautiful State Park in Arkansas, spent the night North of Little Rock in another KOA Kabin, visited the Clinton Library in Little Rock, made my way back to Texas, day-charged again in Mt. Vernon RV Park (kinda slow charging, think it might have been 208 V, not 240V.)
    Total mileage for the trip was just under 3,000 miles, States visited: TX, LA, MS, AL, GA, SC, NC, TN, AR, TX.

    In hind-sight, IF I were to do the same trip today, parts of the trip would have been the same having to use RV Parks for charging. But the portion on the East Coast now has about five or six Superchargers that did not exist then, and they sure would have been handy/timely.
    LA, MS, AL, AR are currently without any Superchargers, there is now one in Southeast TN.
    There still is not a way out of Texas except using RV Parks or other methods, all we need are three to the North or about six to the East.
    Supercharging Rocks, you just learn to be patient and endure some of the other stuff you encounter when you don't have one available for a much quicker charge.

    My SECOND long driving trip was almost the complete opposite to the first one.
    Except for the initial charging at a RV Park outside OKC and then a top-up in Wellington, KS, it was all powered by Superchargers, from Salinas, KS, over thru CO, UT, down thru Vegas, over to Barstow, CA, then North to the other Burlington in WA.
    And then returned via a different route.
    Left Dallas @ 1PM on Friday July 11, (Supercharging started on Saturday morning in Salinas, KS) arrived in Burlington, WA around 5 AM on following Tuesday, July 15, a really torrid driving pace considering I drove solo, and chose to follow the SpC "path". Future Supercharger installations toward the Northwest will make a more direct drive to WA a better reality.

    First mistake was not getting enough charge @ Green River, UT.
    I left with what I thought was adequate buffer of 50 miles, and the first mountain range took a huge bite out of that buffer.
    So I continued on, slowing down significantly thru the next two mountain ranges, and ended up with 50 miles of range when I pulled in for my next Supercharge.
    Effective driving wins again, went downhill about 27 miles at one point and the mileage range did not budge, in fact it might have given me about 3 miles back to my range.

    At Richfield I ran into a very nice couple from Orem who gave me a tip on charging in Cedar City, UT @ Best Western. First two hours of charging was free, and I was there about 90 minutes.
    The KOA in St. George wanted like $30 bucks for a quick top-up charge.

    Went onto Vegas (arrived with a 90 mile buffer in my pack), Superchargers were fully occupied, ran into brianman who gave me some advise on how to extend range and grab some quick naps while charging.

    My original travel plan was to spend some time in Tacoma and the Museum there, but then I read that Squamish SpC was about to open, so I altered my plans on the fly...
    (Just keep pushing that envelope)
    Tuesday morning, I took the early morning ferry from Anacortes thru the San Juan Islands (hoping to see an Orca -- none spotted, just saw a couple of otters and seals) over to Vancouver Island, visited Butchart Gardens (incredible beauty). Took a second ferry over to Tsawwassen, BC and headed North to Squamish.
    Had some major difficulty with interactive GPS in Canada, spent most of the time on the phone with Tesla Reps, who acted as my directional eyes. Both of them were helpful, kind and fun considering I was basically driving semi-blind.
    The NEW Superchargers were cordoned off with yellow tape and pylons, but operational. The Contractor had just finished installing the paving topping for the area (no, I did NOT drive on it), had not even painted the stripes yet, so I backed-in sideways in adjacent space, plugged in and Supercharged.
    Just find a way, and adapt to the situation presented to you.
    I spent the next 45 minutes showing the car to a(n) (curious and) engaging young couple who ambled over as I drove up.
    And I still made it South of Seattle to beat the morning traffic.

    I stopped in Portland, headed to their museum (never made it there), visited their local Farmer Market, pick up a bunch of goodies and continued South.

    Second mistake was drinking what I thought was coffee, from Dutch Brothers.
    I had run into another Tesla owner, and he bought me the beverage.
    I think it was equivalent to a triple espresso, certainly not a traditional coffee.
    Oh my goodness...
    First I thought I was high, or speeding, and was sweating like crazy, and then I started 'crashing', getting very tired, losing focus. This would typically not be a problem in some areas, but it was late at night and I was driving curving mountain roads single file in traffic between concrete barricades.
    Suddenly it was a huge problem: I needed to get off the road and stop NOW.
    Very scary scenario.
    I found a hotel, they were sold out (full), went to the next hotel, got a room, collapsed on top of the bed with my clothes on.
    Out like a light. *

    Continued on in the morning, went to Bonnie's house and there were about 35 to 45 MS (most of the cross-country group that Aaron headed up were there) and some Roadsters, and an electric Fiat.
    Terrific band, lots of food and great people to meet and mingle with, crawdads to play with (thank you Rolo).
    Bonnie is one of a kind: sweet, funny, smart, genuine. And a knock-out to boot.

    I left there, went to a local Hotel Bonnie had found and recommended.
    Had a great nights's sleep, actually got into the bed and under the covers this time.

    Friday went over to the Tesla Factory @ Fremont, and waited my turn to charge.
    On that day, eight chargers was NOT enough, had to wait my turn in line. (another form of Patience)
    The 10 or so Cross-Country group was there, along with some locals and some spillages (like me), and then there were some folks actually taking delivery of their new cars.
    Major interest was generated by a fully painted (everything) Purple MS, including the dash, nose cone, fairings, door sills, etc. that was being prepared for delivery. Oh, and it had a black Alcatera headliner.
    The owner took delivery, drove away, and then came back, and Supercharged.
    VERY impressive looking build.
    I took some photos, but the time of day and sun angle caused the coloration in the pictures to be off.
    But the car is definitely DEEP PURPLE.

    Several of us went over to a local eatery, and then on the Monterey host hotel for the TMC Connect conference.
    Did some light looking around and further snacking.
    Attended the TMC Conference on Saturday, had group breakfast, and left Sunday, headed over to Laguna Seca racetrack.
    I was not able to schedule any charging time on the temporary Superchargers there, watched a bunch of different groups (including electric motorcycles) as they lapped the course.
    Since I have a MS and not a P or P+, I left and headed South toward LA, Hawthorne and then San Juan Capistrano and then over to Palm Springs.
    I had previously worked on a mall and hotel project in Palm Springs, and wanted to also visit some of the mid-Century Classic California Modern Structures.
    They had just completed tearing down the mall, had left the hotel standing.
    A lot of the town's population was on holiday (small businesses were closed) or indoors, because it was brutally, bleeding hot.

    I did have a chance to visit the Museum (it had good A/C) and scouted the town for some sights, food, buildings, things of interest.
    Found a nice small Air Museum.
    Got a bit of a charge at the Visitor's Center, headed East toward Quartzite, AZ.
    Stopped @ Indio, took lots of photos and decided it still needed a lot of work and filling in trenches.
    Really took it easy going up the mountain, turned off the AC and almost everything on the way to Quartzite.
    Once Indio Supercharger is operational, it will make that part of the drive a breeze.
    Looked at tables and tables and mounds of rocks and minerals in Quartzite across the street from the Supercharger.
    And did not purchase a single one, but I did get a burger and a cold drink.

    Headed further East toward Phoenix and then North.
    Finally crossed into NM, then back into AZ then UT again.
    Great, great scenery.

    Southern Utah is so incredibly beautiful, the mountains, arches, stone colorations: simply a wonderful place to visit and take a drive.
    Stopped at Blanding, UT, took some photos, have a lot of pictures still in my mind's eye.

    Headed back into Colorado, wanted to stop for the night @ Grand Junction, but hotel was full.
    Found another hotel further down the route, local rodeo was going on.

    Spent some time in Denver's Gardens (with temporary Chihuly Glass exhibit), which was quite different (yet somewhat similar) than the exhibit in Dallas almost two years ago.
    Excellent Exhibit, really nice gardens too.
    Went to Denver's Museum, and saw a majority of their permanent collection, all of their visiting collections, and many adjacent buildings.

    Headed back thru Kansas, then South.
    Got a boost-charge @ fair-grounds in Hutchison, KS fair-grounds, went on to OKC for overnight full charge before heading back to Dallas.
    Bought some watermelons from a very nice lady on the side of the road, came back to the Texas summer heat (it was in the 60s in Northern Washington in the mornings.)

    A couple of pointers I picked up from brianman: drafting is a great way to significantly increase driving speed and range.
    Several times I followed truck(s) @ 70 mph and range still increased.
    The trucks are doing most of the work, and creating a small vacuum or void behind them that one can nicely slot into.
    Sometimes the truckers did seem to get a bit annoyed by my drafting them, others did not seem to mind.
    Keep on Truckin'

    Around 7,400 miles on this trip, and except for the Holland Brothers episode, a really great trip.

    I left Dallas on July 11 right @ 18,000 miles, and now am at 26,700 miles and counting.
    The MS is an unbelievable car, almost like a Timex or a Swiss Army knife.
    It will do almost anything one asks of it.
    Just make some plans, pack your bags (and sleeping bag) and go.

  5. Rockster

    Rockster Active Member

    Oct 22, 2013
    McKinney, TX
    Thanks for posting, Walt! We are thinking of making a trip towards Colorado sometime this fall or winter. The jump through OK should be our only slow charge stop.
  6. napabill

    napabill Active Member

    Apr 30, 2009
    Napa, California, United States
    Doing the Burlington, Wa, Anacortes, San Juan Islands (Friday Harbor), then on over to Sidney, BC. Staying in the area for a few days, then on to Vancouver via ferry. Any advice?
  7. purplewalt

    purplewalt Active Member

    Jun 9, 2013
    Dallas, Texas
    #7 purplewalt, Sep 11, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2014
    Please check with your Local Service Center before going into Canada, advise them you intend to travel there.
    They may have updates or be able to add/adjust your car to make a successful transition for your drive/foray into Canada.

    Be sure to bring your US passport with you, as you will need it when you try to return to the US.

    US AT&T and Canadian AT&T are NOT fully compatible.
    Okay, they just don't speak the same lingo.

    Most of the time I had ZERO Bars or at most ONE Bar for connectivity.

    Your car has a GPS SIM card, and it might get you some places, but mine showed a grey gridded screen on the console and a jagged blue line, which was not a part of any road I could get on to. We judge distances by scale, and without any roads, the blue line was just a blue line.
    The left hand part of the screen on the dash had some navigational/directional information, but it was not always viable (out-of-date information).

    Canadian MSs can come into the US, and they are cool, ready to roll.
    US MSs going into Canada, hmmm, could use some Navigational Improvements.

    Depending on how old your car is, the GPS SIM card might need to be updated, (mine is almost 15 months old).
    Arriving from Tsawwassen, I was on a very new road near the airport, and it had almost no traffic (very few other cars) and the road had concrete barricades/barriers on both sides.
    And lots of signs indicating direction back to the US Border (South), but I wanted to head North.
    Without any context (like on a typical navigation map), it is really hard (actually it was impossible) to figure out where I was, or was going.
    Once in Canada, I switched the car over to KM, as that is what all local roads in Canada are measured in for distance and speed.
    But, that made some things even more confusing (to simple-minded me), as 35 KPH is not the same as 35 MPH.

    Bring a huge dose of self-depricating humor with you, enjoy the drive (adventure) in Canada as if it is a scary ride in a theme park or a bad Twilight Zone segment.
    You will certainly get lost (without viable GPS), and if you can keep your wits around you, you will eventually figure it out.
    I actually had a printed Atlas for all of the US and Canada with me, and had been to /Vancouver twice before, once while driving and ferrying from Seattle.
    But the shear scale of the vicinity is daunting, especially as I went further from Vancouver toward Squamish (I had never been that far out of Vancouver before).
    If I were to do the drive into Canada again, I would absolutely bring a large printed version of a map of the area with me.
    And USE it.

    Best of Luck!!!
  8. Dave46

    Dave46 Member

    Aug 29, 2014
    We are traveling in Canada (no MS yet) and since our ATT was not working I bought aTelus Sim card for an android phone. For about $45 I got the Sim with 1 GB data good for 1 month. Google maps and nav work as expected. You could tether the MS to the phone wifi hotspot and the car should work too. Enjoyed reading your trip tips.
  9. invisik

    invisik Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    This summer, Minneapolis, MN to Nashville, TN and back... 2074 actual miles, used 577 kwh. Weather conditions were ideal, high 70F's, sunny, no wind, A/C on about 70F normal mode. Was getting 1:1 rated miles to actual miles the entire way. 70mph-78mph average depending per leg. Brilliant!

    Minneapolis to
    Mauston, WI to
    Rockford, IL to
    Normal, IL to
    Indianapolis, IN (overnight) to
    Louisville, KY to
    Nashville, TN.

    Any remaining range anxiety is gone now!

    The car is so comfortable... I didn't feel beat-up after driving for many hours. Regular breaks helped and there's something about the padding in the seat that just fits the contour of my back perfectly. Pretty decent AT&T coverage the whole way too, only a few dead spots that were in the low valleys--lots of internet radio time.

    I stopped by the Corvette factory between KY and TN.. I missed the tours but a cool place to see nonetheless.

    Great trip, ready to do it again next year!


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